With the Vernon Vipers struggling at times this season, many expected that the team would be very active at the trade deadline, looking ahead to next season when they host the RBC Cup National Junior ‘A’ Championship.
Move number one saw the Vipers ship their leading scorer Adam Tambellini(94) to the Surrey Eagles in exchange for Mason Blacklock (94) and future considerations.
Tambellini who was in his second season with the Vipers was leading the Vipers in both goals (22) and points (39). His goal total was good enough for third in the BCHL behind Mario Puskarich of Langley and his new teammate Brady Shaw.
Blacklock is in his third BCHL season and his first with the Eagles. So far this season he has 9 goals and 8 assists for 17 points in 34 games. The 6’1 195 pound product of White Rock has also spent time in the league with Nanaimo and Langley.
The second move on deadline day saw the Snakes ship third year Viper Aaron Hadley to the Nanaimo Clippers in exchange for future considerations. Hadley had played 146 regular season games in a Viper uniform. This season his 12 goals were good for second on the team behind Tambellini.
General Manager and Head Coach Jason Williamson admits these were difficult moves to make. “Any time you are trading away two of your best players it is an extremely difficult thing to do. They were both very big parts of our dressing room and our team. This was one of the most difficult things I have had to do in my time as General Manager. With that being said we had to take a look at what was best for the Vipers next season with hosting the RBC Cup and at the same time continuing to push for a playoff spot this season. We are very happy with the players we have coming in next season as well as being able to add a player like Mason this year”
Vernon also shipped forward Pearce Eviston to the Victoria Grizzlies in exchange for future considerations while adding 19 year old defenceman Jason Bird to the roster.
The Vipers would like to wish Adam,Aaron and Pearce the best of luck this season and in the future and would like to welcome Mason and Jason to the hockey club.